Developing the Isothermal Control Platform (ICP) as the Basis of New Proposed Standards for the Testing of Lithium Batteries for Use in Electric Vehicles.

Abstract

"The characterisation of batteries is critical in the development of lithium battery chemistries and in their safe and efficient implementation in every-day devices. This is of particular importance when considering their use within electric vehicles, where the accuracy of data obtained during tests can significantly influence the designs of modules, the associated thermal management systems and greatly affect performance. Consequently, it is fundamental to understanding whether or not particular battery chemistries and constructions are capable of providing enough power in a safe manner to drive a vehicle under both normal and extreme conditions of use. The design of a cooling system which prevents batteries from overheating is a necessary requirement in every electric vehicle and impacts on safety, battery longevity, vehicle range and vehicle performance. So, in essence it can make or break a particular electric vehicle design.

To address these issues, during the past eight months Thermal Hazard Technology (THT) and Imperial College London (Imperial) have been involved in the development of the Isothermal Control Platform (ICP), as part of a Feasibility Study funded by the Faraday Challenge.

The ICP is a platform which controls the temperature of a battery precisely by adding or removing heat directly. Each cell is subdivided into a matrix of zones based on its geometry and specific components, and the temperatures of each of these zones is controlled independently. Furthermore, by using a model for predicting internal temperatures it is possible to control the internal temperature of these to a specified depth or layer non-invasively.

The programme is progressing well and is on track to deliver the expected prototype. The improvements in the accuracy and quality of data obtained during cycling tests, stress tests, etc. which the ICP makes possible, are ultimately translated into significant gains in battery performance, reliability and safety. With such enhancements in the quality of data available there exists a real potential for setting new standards across the whole industry.

A programme of work is therefore proposed whereby the Imperial team focuses on developing such protocols, and are joined by researchers from Cranfield who will enhance the team's capabilities and give additional momentum to establishing these tests as internationally recognised standards. During the Research phase of the project, THT will concentrate on integrating these prescribed methods into the ICP system, whilst also taking the platform from its current prototype configuration to a pre-commercial system."

Lead Participant

Project Cost

Grant Offer

Heath Scientific Company Ltd, Bletchley £396,625 £ 277,637
 

Participant

Imperal London College, London
Cranfield University, United Kingdom

Publications

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